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About Jollyhohnson

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  1. Roaccutane on the NHS: A UK Blog

    DAY 4 Obviously nothing much to report yet. I don't expect to see any changes until 3-4 weeks into the treatment. I'm actually weirdly looking forward to the dry skin because that will mean it's working.
  2. In terms of dark green leafy veg, what are we thinking?: I eat broccoli, normally lightly steamed or stir-fried as I like it with a crunch. I eat Mangetout and Peas. I also eat lots of spinach and occassionally watercress. With anti-oxidant berries I'm assuming you're thinking of blueberries?? I believe broccoli, spinach and carrots (even raw ones) provide vitamin A. I want to eat Kale but I have no idea how to prepare it so that I'd actually want to eat it. Seeds are a great idea. I already add them to salad, but I could add some to my breakfast too I guess. I will not be eating beetroot. I tried and it's gross. Or liver. Also gross.
  3. acne treatment drying my skin out - helppp

    It sounds like you need a good moisturiser. Differin has a tendency to dry out the skin. If you have combination skin - so oily patches on your T-zone but dry cheeks for example - you may need to use two different moisturisers. For dry areas, look for something designed for sensitive skin. For the oily areas something like Avene Cleanance can work really well. You could also try using the Differin every other day for a bit. If in doubt, talk to your doctor.
  4. Simply hot water works!

    Yes, the sun can actually work as an anti-inflammatory and improve acne (a doctor explained to me why once, but I don't remember). However, you have to be careful as sun also damages the skin and can cause irritation leading to more acne. A good spf is always important. Relaxation and being free from stress can also help. You shouldn't really be using hot water on your face as although it may have an initial soothing effect it actually irritates the skin. Then again, if it's working for you then congrats! That's great.
  5. I agree with RNAcne that a level of public education is definitely needed. Acne is not seen as a serious condition. It's laughed at and mocked in almost every teenage and rom-com film ever, so when teenagers get acne of course they're going to feel awful. Acne causes anxiety and depression and I just wish there was a charity out there dedicated to helping acne sufferers and educating the public that it is not our fault that we suffer from acne. Responding to the OP, I certainly don't think we need to forgive ourselves for having acne. However, achieving some sense of self-acceptance is important. I've certainly felt ashamed because of my acne.
  6. I've heard that some people use Retinol/Retin A to maintain their skin after Roaccutane. You can get a prescription from the doctor or buy products that contain retinol. It helps the skin turn over and prevents clogged pores. If in doubt, try and see a dermatologist. Also, if you have small, under the skin bumps that don't come to the surface and are tender whatever you do don't pick them. They need to be allowed to surface or go down on their own. I sometimes take ibuprofen before I go to bed and find that helps the swelling go down - but you can't be taking ibuprofen all the time as it's bad for the stomach.
  7. I have absolutely felt like this. Not all the time, but on certain bad days. I know why too. I feel ashamed. I feel ashamed that my skin looks so disgusting and ugly. I don't look people in the eye because I can't face that they might be looking at me and judging me. I also know that this is complete nonsense, and that most people will never judge me because of my skin, not the people that matter anyway. But I still feel like that sometimes. I think the most important thing is to talk about it. Tell your friends how you feel and you'll probably find that your acne doesn't bother them at all.
  8. Severe Acne scars

    Hi. I have very similar scars myself and I know how you feel. I spent the last couple of months so anxious and depressed that I was making myself physically ill. I couldn't eat, I couldn't concentrate. The most important thing is that you talk to someone about it. Get some counselling if you can - that's what I'm doing. Scars are horrible things but they don't stop you living your life and being happy. In the photo it looks like you have some active acne? If that's the case you need to get that sorted first as you can't have any scar treatments until the acne is gone. What medication are you about to start? I've just started Roaccutane to get my acne sorted. It means I can't have anything done for my scars until at least a year, but I've already started to look at what's available and I can tell you that you can absolutely improve your scarring! The important thing is to get them assessed by a properly qualified doctor who specialises in acne scar treatments. BeautifulAmbition can give you more detailed advice - he's a moderator and often responds to posts on scarring.
  9. Yep, it's another Roaccutane blog. However, seeing as the experience of seeing a dermatologist and getting a prescription works very differently in the UK I thought it would be worth recording the experience - hopefully it will be helpful to others. UK based product recommendations are appreciated. To begin, I'm a 26 year old woman. I started my course of Roaccutane yesterday. It was not an easy decision, but after my mental health started to suffer following a particularly bad breakout which left me with permanent scarring I decided that the two dermatologists who had recommended the treatment probably knew best. Also, six months of being dairy-free and mostly sugar free had achieved nothing except cravings for cookies and pizza. I'm going to skip my personal bio for now (if you want to read about it I'll stick it at the end of this post) and go straight to the main story: In May I got referred to the dermatologist and made an appointment with the NHS treatment centre near me. My appointment was in September!!! Yep, it can take that long to get an appointment through the NHS. My appointment then got cancelled and rescheduled for November due to the Dermatologist taking a leave of absence. At this point I considered going private but it is VERY VERY expensive. However, instead I rang the treatment centre a couple of times to see if they had any cancellations and if I could get an earlier appointment. The first time I rang I managed to get my appointment moved to October. Better, but not brilliant. But then this Monday when I rang they said they had an appointment on Wednesday (yesterday), and I took it. Over two months earlier than my original appointment!! So lesson number one, it's worth ringing and checking for cancellations because it might happen. When I originally made my appointment I really wasn't sure about Roaccutane. I still believed that had to be an alternative. But with only two days to wait I didn't have time for second thoughts. When I went to see the dermatologist he really helped put me at ease. Unlike private dermatologists, dermatologists working for the NHS don't profit from prescribing treatments. I had previously seen a private dermatologist for a free consultation. He also prescribed Roaccutane, but charged lots of money for each monthly appointment. At the NHS treatment centre we talked about side-effects, the length of the course, and expected results and he was happy to give me the time I needed. Once I said yes, I had to do a pregnancy test (Roaccutane can harm an unborn fetus, so getting pregnant is a serious no no). You also have to do a blood test, but I had already done one earlier so this wasn't necessary. I then got my prescription, easy as that. I'm starting on 30mg a day. It's a pretty low dose, but the dermatologist said the dose will increase as long as I seemed to be tolerating the drug ok. You must take it with a meal, so I take it with dinner. That's it so far, but I will keep you updated. Personal Bio: I started getting acne when I was about 14. People say you'll grow out of it and that's what I believed. At 16, when it became very evident that Clearasil did nothing, I got a prescription for clindamycin, a topical anti-biotic. It helped quite a bit, but never entirely eliminated my acne, which I continued to live with. At 17 I started the contraceptive pill, which I guess probably helped a bit too. But I didn't grow out of it. At 20, a brief break from the contraceptive pill (miscounted the packs I had when I went abroad and missed a month) led to a bad breakout. The doctor prescribed Epiduo ( a topical benzoyl peroxide and adapelene cream) and an oral antibiotic called Tetralycine. This led to the WORST breakout of my entire life. Plus the Epiduo stung really bad. I stuck with it and eventually after three-four months my skin cleared up. In fact, my skin was the best behaved it had been in ages, although I did still get some spots. I continued with this treatment for many months, eventually weaning my skin off Epiduo (I was worried about the long term use of a cream that's not really meant to be good for your skin). I'd been left with some indented scarring, mainly on my forehead, but nothing major. My skin stayed ok for a good couple of years, and I could live with a few small spots, although I guess as time went on it was getting gradually worse again. At 25 I was at a routine appointment and my doctor recommended some topical antibiotics. Remembering how they had helped a bit before I said yes. This time it was Erythromycin and Zinc. For the first few months this worked brilliantly. I had lovely clear skin. But after time my skin started to get oily. Although I didn't get any inflamed spots I did start to get blackheads and bumps. Eventually my skin started to look worse than it had before I started using the antibiotic lotion and so I decided to stop using it - the doctor had said that it would probably be a temporary solution. However, after I stopped my skin went CRAZY. My skin went from oily to dry and I had severe inflamed cystic acne all over my cheeks which would itch and sting. This lasted a couple of months. I didn't know what to do. In the end I waited it out. The doctor referred me to the dermatologist but by the time I saw him it had mostly calmed down. I still get small, inflamed cysts as well as other types of spots - usually 8-10 at any one time. Often the cysts don't come to a head but sit under the skin and take forever to go. That outbreak left me physically and mentally scarred. But as you can't treat scarring if you still have active acne I was still left looking for a solution. Hopefully, Roaccutane is that solution.
  10. Recommendations for scar treatment clinics in the UK?

    I think that's good advice Jacob. I actually started Roaccutane yesterday. Not an easy decision but it gives me over a year to save up for any scar treatments I might want later on. £800 is a lot, but if it helped as much as it claims to then it would totally be worth it! I would love to hear about how you found the laser treatment and what type of laser you had?
  11. Thanks for all the suggestions - not really sure where to start! I guess trying gluten free for a couple of months could be an option, but I've never had an adverse reaction to eating wheat.
  12. Thanks, that's really helpful to know. Do you have any information on prices?
  13. How did you get an appointment with Dr Chu? I'm having to delay my scar treatments because I'm thinking of starting a course of Roaccutane, but when I do get something done about scars I'm hoping to see Dr Chu. What did you think of him? Agreed - I've heard that subicision needs to be followed by a filler in order for any real improvement. Otherwise the skin just stays where it is, tethered or not.
  14. Recommendations for scar treatment clinics in the UK?

    Yeah, I still have regular outbreaks unfortunately. I thought I was getting it under control, but then, no, more spots. I really don't want to take roaccutane, but I feel like I've exhausted the other options at this point. I haven't had clear skin since I was about 14! Regarding Dr Julian De Silva - true, he's not a dermatologist. But he seems fairly experienced when it comes to CO2 laser, and uses it to treat scarring. Just a possible option - though probably VERY expensive. I'm looking forward to reading about your experience.
  15. So after suffering from an extremely severe bout of cystic acne (caused by stopping topical antibiotic lotion) at the end of 2016, I decided to give the dairy-free diet a go. I cut out all dairy from my diet, all of it. No milk, no cheese, no cream, no butter, no chocolate, none of it. Used to have cheese sandwiches quite a bit and a chocolate bar nearly every day - gave it all up. I've been dairy free for over six months now and to be completely honest, I don't really see much difference to what my skin was like before I used the topical antibiotic lotion. Just the same moderate, inflamed acne. So many people have had such success with this, and I honestly believe there is a link between diet and acne, so what am I doing wrong? My diet on a typical day is as follows: Breakfast: a bowl of low-sugar cereal or porridge made with almond milk. Mid-morning: black coffee Lunch: salad with spinach and other greens, tomatoes, cucumber, chickpeas, red onion, sometimes avocado, cous cous, or red pepper. Dairy-free dressing. Afternoon snack: an apple and a handful of nuts Dinner: Stir-fry/Beef and Bean Chili/Chicken Curry/Fish and Chips with veg/etc Evening: Green Tea and, occasionally, a few pieces of dark chocolate (no dairy) I also take a Cod Liver Oil and Evening Primrose Oil Supplement. Any suggestions?
  16. May I ask which clinic/doctor you visited? Also, did you have filler with your subicision?
  17. Recommendations for scar treatment clinics in the UK?

    So on Friday I went to the West London Dermatology Clinic. I have to say, first impressions weren't good. Rather than a dedicated facility it just looked like any other beauty clinic, based on the top floor above a restaurant. The doctor was ok. Very professional. But he's not actually based in this clinic at all - he's based in a different clinic called Parkfield Medical in Birmingham. So it wasn't the specialised London clinic I was hoping for. I've now decided to start a course of Roaccutane, so I will have to delay any scar treatments for at least a year now. However, I've still been looking around and wondered if anyone had any experience with the following clinics: The London Scar Clinic at 152 Harley Street with Dr Al Naimi The Centre for Advanced Facial Cosmetic and Plastic Surgery with Dr Julian De Silva
  18. Advice needed!! Best scar treatment options? (photos)

    Okay. Sorry for the slight delay but it's been a busy weekend. I went to the West London Dermatology Clinic on Friday. I have to say, first impressions weren't good. Rather than a dedicated facility it just looked like any other beauty clinic, based on the top floor above a restaurant. The doctor was ok. Very professional. But he's not actually based in this clinic at all - he's based in a different clinic called Parkfield Medical in Birmingham. Unfortunately he told me that I couldn't have any scar treatments at all until my acne was under control, and he personally recommended Roaccutane - which isn't really what I wanted to hear, but I feel like it's the only option I have at the moment. So it looks like my scars won't be going anywhere. Hopefully Roaccutane won't make them worse. Meanwhile, for those of you hoping for some information about scar treatments, I wrote everything down and here it is: Dermatologist recommends subicision as a first treatment if necessary (he said I wouldn't be a candidate for subcision but I don't know if I agree. I'll probably seek a second opinion). He then recommended 1-3 sessions of CO2 laser, with a good amount of recovery time before any other treatments (at least a month in between each treatment). TCA cross would be next. He said that dermapen works in a similar (but less effective way) than CO2 laser, and could be used as an additional follow-up treatment later on. He said that CO2 laser could realistically achieve a 45-50% improvement, whereas Dermapen would more likely be no more than 40%. Apparently for wide, shallow scarring, which is what he said I have, laser is best. Further treatment could then bring that improvement percentage up further. Subicision would cost £100 on it's own but could be done for £50 if included with another treatment. Filler varies in price. CO2 is £400 per session, or £900 for three sessions. TCA Cross is £150 each, or £375 for three sessions. Dermapen is £225 or 15% off for a package of three or more. A TCA peel is £150 each. Some of these prices are estimates and will depend on the treatment area. I was personally surprised at how much cheaper some of these options are compared to others I've seen. Obviously the main thing to remember is that if you're on Roaccutane you should avoid all scar revision treatment for the duration of the treatment and six months afterwards (at least!). I'm gonna have to be patient!
  19. Buying Accutane Online (UK)

    Accutane gel? Are you looking to buy tablets or a face lotion? If you're looking for the Accutane drug - do NOT buy it online. There's a reason that doctor's only prescribe it as a last resort and you don't know what you're getting if you buy it online. I agree the waiting time to see a dermatologist is ridiculous, but don't do it! If you're looking for a topical accutane/isotretinion product you can get one on prescription from your GP. There's one called Adapalene I believe.

    Cetaphil - absolutely fantastic moisturiser for dry skin, especially if you're using BP. It's also pretty cheap. The only problem with it is that it tends to look greasy if applied during the day, but it works fantastic as a night moisturiser.
  21. Advice needed!! Best scar treatment options? (photos)

    Thanks for all this advice - it's really helpful just to be able to talk about it all with people who understand me. I'm incredibly lucky to have really supportive family and friends, but I don't think they really get how I can be so upset by my skin. I've taken your advice beautifulambition and got myself booked in for some counselling too. Not sure what they'll be like as they're not private, but I guess it's a start. I don't live in London and it's a bit of a trek to get down there - so having downtime between procedures is fine with me. Definitely can't afford to be going down to London every other week. It might make work a little uncomfortable but I guess I'll just have to soldier on. I heard the recovery period after subcision is quite long - is that true? I'm soooo nervous about tomorrow.
  22. Advice needed!! Best scar treatment options? (photos)

    I'll ask them that when I go to the dermatology clinic on Friday.
  23. Advice needed!! Best scar treatment options? (photos)

    Thanks beautifulambition for all the information and advice! My current acne isn't very severe, so I'm hoping to get it under control without resorting to Accutane if possible. I actually asked to be tested for PCOS, and asked my dermatologist if my acne might be hormonal. He basically just shrugged and said that there was no point testing, and that if it was hormonal the only advice they would give is diet and exercise. I'm now booked in for a consultation on Friday at the West London Dermatology Clinic where Dr Chu works, although my appointment is with a colleague of his. I'll see what they say and then post an update. I think some UK clinics offer PDT - or something similar. From my research it looks as if Dr Chu has been part of a research team looking at a different type of light therapy involving blue and red light. Might ask about it while I'm at the Clinic.
  24. Recommendations for scar treatment clinics in the UK?

    I keep hearing about this Dr Chu so I've gone and booked a consultation with the West London Dermatology Centre where he's based. I'll be seeing his associate Dr Anil Budh-Raja for a free consultation, as a consultation with Dr Chu is £225 or thereabouts. Apparently if I want any treatments with Dr Chu I will have to pay the consultation fee, so I guess I'll just have to see what happens. If I decide to get any treatments done I'll definitely start a new thread and keep you all updated.
  25. Recommendations for scar treatment clinics in the UK?

    That's really disappointing - they're probably the closest clinic to me and I was hoping dermapen there could be an option. I'm sorry you had such a bad experience. Which clinic in the midlands did you visit?